The rising star reflects on his career progress and getting recognised in Tesco…
McGill beat Stephen Maguire and Mark Selby on his first Crucible appearance, before losing to Shaun Murphy
Anthony, what have you been up to this summer?
I haven’t been on holiday because we spend so much time travelling during the snooker season, that it’s nice to spend some time at home when we get a chance. So I’ve just been chilling out really. The season gets going again soon so I’m getting back into practice.
How do you feel when you look back on last season?
I’m going in the right direction. I got to the quarter-finals of two big BBC events, the UK Championship and World Championship, as well as the semis of the Riga Open. Each year on tour I have made progress, my game is improving and I want to keep that going. Obviously the Crucible was fantastic because I proved to myself that I can beat the best players over the long matches.
Any targets for the new season?
I’m not really one to set targets, I just try my hardest in every match. Saying that, I’ve got to a couple of quarter-finals in the big events now so I’d like to get to a semi or final. And I’m 24th in the rankings so the top 16 is not that far away. Being in the top 16 only really matters now in January for the Masters and April for the World. I’m not sure what I’d have to do to qualify for the Masters, I’d probably need to win a tournament before then.
Beating Stephen Maguire and Mark Selby at the Crucible generated a lot of publicity for you – have you been recognised more since?
No, Anthony has not started shopping in Waitrose
Yes, especially in the first couple of weeks after I got home. And it’s still happening a bit now – I was in Tesco the other day when someone asked for my autograph. It doesn’t bother me although I find it a bit weird that people I’ve never met before know my name. When you’re inside the snooker bubble, sometimes you don’t realise that the man on the street is watching you on TV. If I went to a tennis tournament I’d just be Joe Bloggs to all the tennis players.
You’re a keen music fan – what are you listening to at the moment?
A lot better than Art Garfunkel’s solo stuff
A friend of mine gave me a CD of Paul Simon’s greatest hits so I’ve had that on in the car on my way to practice. When I was in Sheffield I had a chat with Hazel Irvine before she interviewed me and she recommended Belle and Sebastian, so I got their first album Tigermilk which is pretty cool.